Fernanda Lastra is currently the Conductor Diversity Fellow with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra. Fernanda hails from the lovely Argentinian city of Mar del Plata. Her interests encompass a vast repertoire including symphonic, contemporary and opera works. She is a passionate advocate for Latin American composers.
As guest conductor Fernanda Lastra has led professional orchestras, youth orchestras and training orchestras in the United States, Argentina, and Brazil. Some of her latest professional engagements include conducting the National Orchestra of Argentine Music Juan de Dios Filiberto at the CCK National Auditorium in Buenos Aires, and the production of Missy Mazzoli's opera "Song from the Uproar" in collaboration with Demaskus Theatre Company and Kassia Ensemble in Pittsburgh.
As a conductor-educator Fernanda served as Director of Orchestras at Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois, where she led the symphony and chamber orchestras, and as Assistant Conductor for the University of Iowa symphony orchestra. During 2016-2017 she served as principal conductor for the Central Pennsylvania Youth Orchestra, from 2008-2012 as professor of orchestral activities at a project with similarities with El Sistema in Argentina, and from 2005 to 2016 as music faculty of La Plata University.
Fernanda earned two bachelor's degrees from La Plata University in orchestral and choral conducting, and a master’s degree in orchestral conducting from Penn State University. She is currently completing her dissertation for the University of Iowa's DMA (Doctor of Musical Arts) degree in Orchestral Conducting. She is trained in piano and viola.
Fernanda believes that music contains a blueprint to establish connections with one another.
The Conductor Diversity Fellow is sponsored by Uniland.